Champions League: Mbappé leads PSG to victory over Juventus

2022-09-07 08:35:09
Champions League: Mbappé leads PSG to victory over Juventus

Kylian Mbappe produced two lethal first-half finishes as Paris Saint-Germain got their latest bid for Champions League success off to a winning start by beating Juventus 2-1 at the Parc des Princes on Tuesday.

Mbappe's two goals were stunning, the first coming after an outrageous scooped assist by Neymar inside five minutes and the second at the end of a superb move midway through the first half.

PSG were cruising at half-time before being given a wake-up call early in the second half as substitute Weston McKennie headed Juventus back into the game.

Yet Juve are a faded force compared to just a few years ago and came to the French capital without several key players, including former PSG star Angel di Maria.

They could not find an equaliser and the Parisians claimed their first three points in Group H.

"I was very pleased with the team," said PSG coach Christophe Galtier. "Winning in difficult circumstances can only make us stronger."

Mbappe, along with Galtier, had come in for stiff criticism in France in the 24 hours leading up to this game for laughing when a question was put to him in the pre-match press conference about his club's decision to travel for last weekend's league visit to Nantes by private jet rather than take a more environmentally friendly train.

The World Cup winner's performance here suggested none of the negative headlines had remotely bothered him, as Mbappe confirmed exactly why PSG were so desperate to keep him at the end of last season when he seemed set to depart for Real Madrid.

"We knew before this game that we had weaknesses but we are working to improve," Mbappe told broadcaster Canal Plus.

He signed a new deal in Paris to 2025 with the aim of leading his hometown team to a first Champions League title after a decade of disappointing defeats and occasional humiliations at the business end of the competition.

"I have a new role in the side now. The coach wants me to be someone who can hold the ball up, to get in behind and also that I act as a link between Leo and Ney. I am trying to adapt to that new role while also scoring goals."

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